Hope of an early resolution of the strike embarked on by the public universities’ lecturers rises as the Vice-President Namadi Sambo met with the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities in Abuja on Thursday.
The meeting held behind closed doors had in attendance the supervising Minister of Education, Nyesom Wike and the Executive Secretary of National Universities Commission, Prof. Julius Okojie.
The union was led by its National President, Dr. Nasir Faggae, and two former Presidents of ASUU; Dr. Dipo Fasina and Dr. Abdullahi Sule-Kano.
Others at the meeting were the Vice-Chancellors of Bayero University Kano, Prof. Abdulrasheed Abubakar; Prof. Isaac Adewole of the University of Ibadan; and Prof. Muhammed Hamisu of the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi.
It was however uncertain if yesterday’s discussion was fruitful as the two parties did not disclose the outcome of the meeting which lasted for two hours to journalists.
Wike assured Nigerians that students would soon return to school as government was ready to make sure all the contending issues were resolved as soon as possible.
But a source at the meeting, who pleaded anonymity, however, told one of our correspondents that going by the new offers made by the Federal Government, the strike might be called off within the next two weeks.
This, the source said, was because the Federal Government had agreed to inject fund to revitalize the university system.
“The meeting went well, the vice-president made some new offers that were different from what was on ground before. For instance, the Federal Government had agreed to start the injection of revitalisation fund into the university system starting with N100bn this year and N150bn in 2014 and this will continue until the university system is solid enough to stand.
The source, however, said that the ASUU team promised the vice-president that the union would make it decision on the strike known after its NEC meeting unconfirmed source said had been scheduled for Saturday.